Image by Aimee Lynn Barrion-Dupo from the website of UPLB Museum of Natural History
MANILA -- Two new spider species have been discovered in Mt. Makiling, the University of the Philippines Los Banos (UPLB) Museum of Natural History (MNH) recently reported.
Curators of the MNH's entomology section, Dr. Aimee Lynn Barrion-Dupo and Dr. Alberto T. Barrion, reported their discovery of the orb-weaver spider Prolochus junlitjri and the comb-footed spider Chrysso makiling in two scientific journals.
According to an article published in the Philippine Entomologist, the Prolochus junlitjri was found in Molawin Creek in Mt. Makiling. The Prolochus was said to be a new distinct genus from the subfamily Dolichognathinae of family Tetragnathidae.
Meanwhile, Chrysso makiling is identified as a Theridiidae or comb-footed spider.
According to the Asia Life Sciences Journal, the C. makiling spider was found from small trees and shrubs of dipterocarp trees near the mudspring area of Mt. Makiling Forest Reserve.
MNH director Ireneo Lit, Jr. said the discovery of the two species in Mt. Makiling further strengthens the need to preserve the Makiling Forest Reserve.
"The discovery of the two species of spiders in Mt. Makiling even further fortifies the importance of the Makiling Forest Reserve as a key biodiversity conservation area," Lit said.
"Spiders also deserve to be conserved and protected especially because they help farmers maintain the populations of pest species below economically damaging levels," he said.
Mt. Makiling was recently chosen as the fifth ASEAN Heritage Park in the Philippines.
Barrio-Dupo is a professor at the Institute of Biological Sciences at UPLB, while Barrion is the adjunct curator of the museum for spiders, parasitic hymenoptera and rice arthropods.